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Eating healthy can help with coronary artery disease | Wear the Gowns

Bea Sutton got a dire warning 20 years ago, but now she's heart healthy after learning about coronary artery disease.

LITTLE ROCK, Arkansas — Why would a couple two hours away from Little Rock make regular visits to the capital city even though it would take about six hours of their busy day?

The Suttons are seemingly your normal matured, married couple that you'd see walking down any hallway.

But what's so unusual about that?

The wife, Bea, doesn't think she's all that normal.

"You know, I think I'm really not that normal because I didn't feel pain," she told us.

The pain she is talking about it the one that normally accompanies cardio-vascular disease. The pain can be almost unbearable, but not for Bea.

"I thought I was completely healthy," she said.

But all those monitors, machines and stress tests suggested something else.

"A quadruple bypass," she said. "And at that point they told me that probably 10 years would be my lifespan."

Now, keep in mind that was 20 years ago.

So how was Bea able beat the odds?

Dr. Anthony Fletcher entered the picture almost 15 years ago.

"I am very blessed to have met Dr. Fletcher," she told us. "I leave with my questions answered."

Fletcher, an experienced interventional cardiologist, knows the problems inside and out.

"Coronary artery disease is the process of the hardening of the arteries mainly due to cholesterol," Fletcher explained. "A lot of it is related to how we live and how we eat."

Bea didn't realize she wasn't eating healthy. She was having a slice or pie or a piece of cake every day and meat with nearly every meal.

And eating healthy is Dr. Fletcher's entry point on becoming heart healthy.

He also said you have to know your numbers.

That means your blood pressure, your weight, your cholesterol and maybe the most important number of all...

"We recommend about 150 minutes of exercise per week," Fletcher said.

Bea walks as much as she can now. She has also gone vegan and loves it.

She surpassed the dire predictions 20 years ago and is confident that she's counting on at least another 15 years.

And we can't end this story without telling you about some symptoms.

Most of them can be felt in the chest area, such as discomfort, pain, pressure, tightness or a burning sensation.

You can also feel that in your arms, shoulders, back, upper abdomen and jaw.

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